Studio Flash Tag

Not every car starts first time, every time - nor does it always travel smoothly on every road. The same with cameras - even the newest of the new. Oh, I'm not suggesting that the new Fujifilm X-T100 did not turn on - it popped to life as soon as I put in a W-126 battery and a small SD card. It even let me bypass the date, time, and place to get to the regular operation fairly quickly. You can probably get into the copyright and EXIF minutae somewhere in the back of the menu cupboard but that is not what you want when you are doing a review. In, bang, and out, please. Had I just taken it for a spin in the garden or out at the park under natural light I would have had no trouble - the Auto ISO and Auto WB would have rendered everything perfectly and I could have snapped to my heart's content. There's a continual - focus setting in the SR+ that seems to anticipate what I am looking at when I glance...

Well, if your subject is just too big, too wild, or too smelly for a studio, you'll have to take it outside. This also applies to the things that are fixed in place - power house turbines, mountains, railway bridges. No good trying to move the mountain...

We are told that light goes at 299,792,458 metres per second. That may be so when there is company present but I can assure you that when you are using a pinhole camera the stuff travels considerably slower. While you might get your ordinary photography with a digital camera in half a second the pinhole camera will require most of the day. The reason for this is simple: the digital camera opens up to a maximum aperture of f:1.8 and uses an ISO of 6400 - the pinhole camera opens up to f: 248 and uses an ISO of 100. If you opt for the paper negative you have an ISO of 0.6 and if you put a yellow filter in front of the thing you have an ISO of peanut butter. As far as making pictures, choose smooth or crunchy...

Not the nanny state - that's a different ketle of fish. We're talking about minor equipmant and accessories that we can use for major photography.Light stands, like porridge,  come in three sizes; too big, too small, and Goldilocks. Errr...

Sounds like a takeoff on an Alexander Korda pre-war movie, doesn't it? And if you've no idea what I am talking about you can google Things To Come. It is worth watching on Netflix.This weblog column is brought to you by the second button from he left on the are Nikon SB5000 - abutton I never saw before on a Nikon speed light. It's the one that looks like a a little human figure with a shadow tapering off behind it. It's one of the final reasons to use this speed light in place of a studio strobe light.Don't get me wrong - a studio strobe light is a wonderful thing. I know, I own five of them and they mostly do what I mostly want most of the time. They have the distinct advantage of taking big light modifiers and pumping out lots of light. Speed lights, on the other hand, largely don't, and have the further disadvantage in not letting us see what they are going to do before they do it. Studio strobes all have modelling lamps...

There are very few occasions when you see light coming up from under a subject in real life; some discotheques in the 80's had light panel floors, you can see it in the classical footlights at the burlesque theatre, and when you open the hatch of hell there is a sort of a lurid glow that comes up. The effect can be quite unsettling.It is stock in trade for Disney artists and illustrators of fantasy and science fiction when they want to make a subject look evil.But it is also a very valid technique when you are trying to illustrate products for advertisements. In many cases the art director wants the viewer to see all parts of the subject evenly lit for either sales appeal or technical illustration. In some instances this is difficult to achieve with the classic hard/soft light or even with a light tent. No matter where you place the lights, the thing always has a shadow around the bottom bits.Enter the light table. A support for the subject that is sturdy enough to bear the weight,...

I called into the shop yesterday to place mousetraps on the toilet seats and as I was waiting for the ladies loo to be vacated, I got to chatting with one of the professional photographers who was standing at the rental counter. I noticed he was taking out a set of studio mono lights - a very good quality item.The odd thing for me was I remember him taking out these same mono lights with various light modifiers all last year, and, I think, the year before. Weekday rentals mostly and some weekend rentals. Lotsa rentals...